IRL: Fontana: Rahal Letterman Racing race report

BUDDY RICE (No. 15 Pioneer/Argent Mortgage Honda G-Force) (Started 6th, Finish 5th) "The car was pretty good today but I don't think we had the speed of a couple of the cars out there. The Pioneer/Argent Honda was solid enough that we could...

BUDDY RICE (No. 15 Pioneer/Argent Mortgage Honda G-Force)
(Started 6th, Finish 5th)

"The car was pretty good today but I don't think we had the speed of a couple of the cars out there. The Pioneer/Argent Honda was solid enough that we could hang in there with Tony and Helio for the most of the day. Then when you have a one or two lap shootout, people come out of nowhere that have been in the back of the pack most of the day. Some guys really make their cars wide too. Our plan was to race with leaders and then get the car ready for the last 20 laps. But I don't think we had the speed that we need at the end. We just missed a little bit on the setup for today. I think it is cooler today than we thought it would be. The wind wasn't a factor for us today. But overall, the weather didn't heat up like we had anticipated and that hurt us a little today. We just didn't read the weather properly for the setup we had."

VITOR MEIRA (No. 17 Team Centrix Honda G-Force)
(Started 5th, Finished 21st due to a broken gearbox)

"On our last pit stop, we left the pits and something didn't feel right. Then I felt a little vibration. And just kept getting worse. At first, I thought it was an engine but later we knew it was the transmission. I don't know if it was clutch or driveshaft or CV joint. Something like that. Our Centrix car today was good but it wasn't fast and I was just hoping to stay with the lead pack. Then we could make it better on the pit stops. I was in the pack for fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth. But that was about it. There wasn't much more I could do. It's a shame because that is the first mechanical failure with the Centrix car all year. It's the first time the Centrix hadn't finished. It's unfortunate that it happened to us now at the end of the season when we are fighting for positions in the points. We'll have a good car for Texas. I'd like to come back and race for the win there."

Meira recorded the Argent Fast Lap of the Day at 216.959 m.p.h. on lap 17.

It was Meira's sixth time in 2004 for the Argent Race Fast Laps, the most of any driver this year on the IRL IndyCar@ Series.

-rlr-

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Series IndyCar